Friday, September 6, 2013

Organization Tip: Put Away, Give Away, Throw Away!

"For God is not a God of disorder but of peace." 
"But everything should be done in a fitting and orderly way." 
-1 Corinthians 14:33,40 

I remember years ago realizing that it was important that I learn to have order in our home to be a good homemaker. As I sat poolside with a coworker's wife, I was telling her about it. She was from the Great Lakes area, where she loved skiing. She told me that when she came in from skiing, she would drop everything in their home wherever she was.

She said that was just the way she was. She turned to me (I remember this like it was yesterday!) and said, "what's wrong with chaos?"

I told her that I was a "messie," too, and could totally relate, but that we could learn to have order not for the sake of order, but because we live in our homes with other people. I told her God was a God of order, and that I wanted to reflect His design.

Having order in our home is something that does not come naturally for me, and I have to constantly work on it.

Do you, (like me ;-) ever have trouble finding something because you haven't put your stuff away to begin with? I'm so guilty of that!

I get back from one place and don't fully unpack before I start pulling out my hair brush and my tennis shoes to use them. Before I know it, we are packing to go somewhere else and I'm looking for something that never got unpacked! Then when I get back, I start pulling out the first thing I need at that moment all over again... not a very organized way to find what you need.

A much better plan would be to unpack everything and put it away. I hope to do that next time I get back from a trip!

One huge organization tip that I learned years ago is the sorting method of cleaning up. You put everything in the area you are cleaning into one of three piles: put away, give away, and throw away (warning: don't try to tackle the whole apartment or whole house!). Pick an area you can really accomplish in the next 30 minutes tops, or reasonable amount of time)

Remember to allow time to really put the items where they belong that are in the put away bag.

Let me know how you do. Don't forget to do something with your piles. You might want to put the give away bag in your car. You want it handy when you are near Good Will or the people you want to give the items to.You know that potty that you haven't used in 12 years because your youngest in now 14? You can give it away!

The throw away pile is easy. Just toss it in the trash. All those pens that don't work that you keep around thinking one day they might just start working again—just throw them away! If something is broken beyond repair, you can actually feel good about finally getting rid of it!

I'm actually heading off right now to do some sorting and putting away myself. I can promise you I'll have a throw away pile of papers that no one needs!

I can't believe I got through this whole post and never mentioned the C word. CLUTTER!!!!! It surfaces and multiplies so easily. When we remove clutter, we actually feel more energy looking at a clean counter (I don't have any scientific research on it—just speaking here to my own experience as having spent a lot of one on one time with clutter... he zaps me of energy and I feel so much more motivated when things are in order. Not to mention that my husband LOVES order.

I'd love to hear about your battle with clutter, and how you get organized!

Psssssssst! Before we go, don't forget about the current giveaway I have going on right now because of the good people at Their ceramic prayer bowl is lovely and they will mail 2 winners off my blog a brand new prayer bowl next week. Contest ends Monday night, September 9, at midnight. Details are here on my last blog here.

Walk by Faith


  1. Thank you for this post. You are so right. I feel so much better when I try to live a more ordered life. It doesn't come naturally to me and I try to stay on top of it as best I can.

    Thanks for the encouragement!

    1. Hi Anonymous! Thank you for taking time to comment. I am so glad you were encouraged in organization!

  2. You've just described me, a fellow messie, with your description of not-quite unpacking and then searching for one of those unpacked items when packing for the next trip. I"ve done that!
    The process you describe, making 3 piles while cleaning out a space, doesn't always work for me. Once I get the space cleaned out, the last thing I want to do is do more putting away. I am finding it works better for me to go ahead and fully put an item where it needs to go, even if it means it will take longer. Gives me lots of good exercise!
    Thanks for your encouraging post, it helps. Stopping by from Encourage One Another

  3. Hi from one recovering messie to another! Don't we feel better when we clean up an area? I love the hymn that says, "Let our ordered lives reflect the beauty of thy peace." Keep it up, Sister!


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